About the India Tomonkai
Under the leadership of its first chairperson Kensaku Konishi (who graduated in 1978 from the School of Education), the India Tomonkai was founded in 2008 by 11 members living in the National Capital Territory of Delhi (capital: New Delhi) and Gurgaon region of North India, a key area of the country’s political and economic activities. With many Japanese citizens returning home at the outbreak of COVID-19 in 2019, at one point, the future of the India Tomonkai became uncertain. Nevertheless, with the encouragement of our current chairperson Satoshi Ogata, we were able to regain our footing, with more than 30 members as of September 2022.
The Tomonkai plays a significant role as part of the infrastructure that supports the lives of Japanese people in India in an environment where the living conditions can be harsh and information may not be sufficiently obtained. We take pride in the fact that despite our differences in industry and company affiliation, our alumni, who have in common the experience of intense hours of study at the same alma mater, can overcome the challenges they face at work and the inconveniences of everyday life and function together as a mutual support network to help each other thrive. Indeed, I believe many of us were saved by this network when the pandemic spread and we experienced a lockdown unparalleled anywhere in the world for the first time in our lives.
Before the COVID-19 pandemic, our main activities were social gatherings for drinks on seasonal occasions and the Waseda vs. Keio Golf Tournament in spring and autumn. On September 4, 2022, the eagerly awaited 23rd Waseda vs. Keio Golf Tournament resumed. I am thrilled that the spark of activities of the India Tomonkai, which had been almost extinguished, was rekindled by seeking out and reorganizing alumni before and after the tournament and by undertaking preliminary preparations and practice sessions. Although we unfortunately lost this year’s tournament, I feel that the ties between the newly acquainted alumni have been further solidified through this activity.
The India Tomonkai is also registered with the Alumni Association’s “Work & Study Abroad Pre-Consultation” program. If you are planning to study or work in India soon and have concerns about the local living conditions or any other issues, please feel free to reach out to us through the Alumni Association.
Ryuuhei Ushikubo (Graduated in 1994, School of Political Science and Economics)